Back in December, we first gave the heads up on the upcoming Aurora Ave N lane closures that will surely impact traffic on both Aurora and Queen Anne. The closures begin the evening of next Monday, January 18th, and WSDOT estimates that the lane closures will take “several” weeks, with estimates from 4-8 weeks. Each direction of Aurora will have one lane closed through potentially March (timetable below).
SDOT is emphasizing the following warning to drivers:
“While two lanes in each direction of SR 99 between Highland Drive and the Aurora Bridge will remain OPEN during peak commute hours, buses and vehicles will share the bus-only lane. We anticipate the possibility of backups and are urging commuters to use all the tools available to them from WSDOT, SDOT and Metro to stay informed about current traffic conditions once the extended lane closures start. In addition, we want to ask drivers to consider commuting/traveling in off-peak hours or telecommute if that’s an option available to them.”
Why the closure? Sign foundations with communication lines, power lines, and traffic sensors to provide alerts for the future tunnel. This work requires access to the median lanes of Aurora.
Here are the closure details & timetable from WSDOT:
Jan. 18 through mid-February
- Median lanes close in both directions between the Aurora Bridge and Highland Drive
- An additional lane will close at night and during several weekends including Jan. 23-24
Mid-February through early March
- Median lanes reopen. Northbound traffic returns to normal pattern
- The southbound curb lane near Comstock Street will close for approximately three weeks
- An additional southbound lane may close at night
WSDOT is encouraging drivers and bus riders to plan ahead as additional congestion is expected on Aurora. For those of us on Queen Anne, expect more non-local traffic in the neighborhood, especially on the arterials and East Queen Anne.